Helping federal clients realize the full potential of data analytics to advance energy-efficient building design

GSA uses existing data to make buildings more efficient

The General Services Administration (GSA) is bringing intelligent building technology to dozens of buildings in its federal portfolio through the GSALink program. By analyzing available data, such as thermostat readings and electricity usage, and applying sound building management principles, GSA has achieved significant savings in maintenance costs while still providing a comfortable working environment. To accomplish this, they transform and analyze large batches of existing data from the building systems into practical information that enables building managers to make wise decisions about conserving resources.

Recently, IBM hosted the Active Energy Management through the Use of Data and Analytics II Forum where speakers including Frank Santella, Assistant Commissioner of the Office of Facilities Management at GSA’s Public Buildings Service, discussed GSA’s success. Mr. Santella credits convergence—merging the best practices of building management with the science of data analytics—with making the GSALink program such a success. During the forum he explained, “We take the data from the building, socialize it to the work environment, and tie it to our scheduling system, taking it to a whole new level.” Access to usage information is particularly beneficial to building managers in the federal government; because they are resource-constrained, they are constantly looking for ways to do more with less.

Dr. Jeffrey Marqusee, Chief Scientist—Enterprise Engineering and Environment at Noblis was also a presenter at the forum. “We are now seeing the value of the first generation of intelligent buildings,” Dr. Marqusee observed. “But the real payoff will come by using this initial infrastructure to exploit new technologies and tap into new markets.” Noblis is supporting GSA’s green efforts by developing a five-year roadmap that defines strategic near- and long-term goals, performance measures, and operational plans for the Green Proving Ground—a test-bed for emerging building technologies.

As a science, technology, and strategy organization, Noblis can help GSA, the Department of Defense (DoD), and other federal agencies analyze existing and emerging technologies and approaches to determine which technologies show the greatest potential. Our considerable expertise in green technologies and sustainability helps us identify the best value proposition for our clients, giving decision makers the information they need to acquire the right intelligent building technology for their situation.

Lessons learned at GSA could readily be used as a model for the DoD—which has roughly 345,000 buildings in its portfolio, 30 percent of which are more than 50 years old—and the Veterans Health Administration, which has the largest inventory of healthcare-related buildings in the United States.

You can view and listen to Mr. Santella’s and Dr. Marqusee’s presentations from the Forum here.

Noblis Expert

Jeffrey Marqusee

Dr. Marqusee is a nationally known expert in environmental science and technology.
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